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johnnybear

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The final episode screened and filmed was The Inquisition. Mark Richman as a senator obsessed by David Vincent and his alien paranoia and Susan Oliver guesting as well as he tried to destroy the Believers and their alien invaders in a court case where aliens even assumed the role of some of Vincent's friends even though he didn't know who they were. The real story though was the aliens were attempting their biggest plan ever by totally eradicating humanity from the earth with a sonic beam device and their leaders had already left the planet in case they were harmed!
Vincent wins and saves both Believers and humanity although Edgar is shot and his final fate is unresolved and Mark Richman even joins Vincent's Believers in the end!
JB
 

johnnybear

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The Condemned was the first season finale and although filmed seventh in order had Vincent capture an alien file with the details of alien landings all over the world for the next year! His ally, Morgan Tate, was killed by their disintegration weapon in the factory, that the aliens led by Murray Hamilton had taken over earlier on, David Vincent was framed for Morgan Tate's murder too but Tate eventually turned up and joined with Vincent to fight the alien invasion! A good ending for season one but it never went anywhere...the file or their landings were never mentioned again!
JB
 

Charles 22

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The final episode screened and filmed was The Inquisition. Mark Richman as a senator obsessed by David Vincent and his alien paranoia and Susan Oliver guesting as well as he tried to destroy the Believers and their alien invaders in a court case where aliens even assumed the role of some of Vincent's friends even though he didn't know who they were. The real story though was the aliens were attempting their biggest plan ever by totally eradicating humanity from the earth with a sonic beam device and their leaders had already left the planet in case they were harmed!
Vincent wins and saves both Believers and humanity although Edgar is shot and his final fate is unresolved and Mark Richman even joins Vincent's Believers in the end!
JB
Yes, I was thinking The Pursued was the last (next-to-last according to IMDB). If you're familiar with Pursued, would you say it was a better last episode than Inquisition? I did notice IMDB showed the last one airing a full two weeks later. I suppose they had a rerun episode inbetween. I do remember Oliver sacrificing herself by wrecking her car in Inquisition. I also remember that I thought it was neat to have two gorgeous ladies in back-to-back episodes (they both had two appearances in the series) but apparently dwelling on that got me mixing the two up, but Pursued definitely was a great one to end the season on, apart from the fact of it's ending dialogue probably didn't suggest a lapse to the next season, like Inquisition might had.

You know, as good as Pursued was to end it, I had thought that was the height of David accomplishing anything towards revealing the aliens, and it probably was. But I think what they may had done, was wanted you to remember what happened in Pursued, therefore making the alien attempt to get really nasty in Inquisition, that much more urgent. You might say they felt they had to up the ante, since apparently David was getting closer to revealing them, and, of course, the aliens were going to strike at some point anyway.
 
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johnnybear

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I've always thought that The Life Bringers would have been a great episode to end the series on! The two aliens taking off in the saucer on their way back to their planet to recall their forces upon earth and end the invasion! But yes The Pursued also had the plot of Vincent getting an alien to Washington having defeated the other aliens on their trail only for Will Geer as a man with a grudge to scupper his plans in the final moments by shooting and killing Anne Gibbs!
JB
 

High C

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I feel the same way about The Invaders as I do about the sport of soccer. I admire it from a technical perspective. But I don't find it particularly enjoyable to watch. It's well-produced, well-directed and well-acted, with a lot of night-for-night shooting and obvious high-quality production values.

But, and this certainly is personal bias, I simply don't find it all that much fun to watch. I'm not into bleak, depressing shows with a lot of violence and a high body count. And let's face it, David Vincent is partially responsible for that high human body count, and that makes him unlikeable in my opinion. Take the episode Labyrinth for example. In the teaser, he comes across an injured man whom he suspects is an alien, and foists him on an unsuspecting doctor, whom the alien soon murders. If not for David Vincent, that doctor would be alive.

But because the doctor is a plot point and played by a bit part actor, the audience isn't supposed to care. Well, guess what? I care. And he is far from the only one. It happens a lot.

As I said, from a visual and performance standpoint, the show is very good. It features many big-time guest stars and it is well-directed, and Thinnes is a good lead. But he is not likeable, partly because of his performance and partly because of the way David Vincent is written. In terms of Thinnes' performance, I realize a guy basically trying to stop an alien invasion on his own wouldn't be a ray of sunshine. But man, is he downbeat. And the epilogues are hardly cathartic for the viewer. It's honestly hard for me to see how they could have squeezed 3-4 seasons out of this.

And the writing--I get that you have to suspend disbelief, and I do. But some of it, even given the situation, is absurd. In Moonshot, the invaders use poisonous gas to kill two astronauts--who are fishing off the Florida Keys eight days before launch. Riiiiiiight. They would be in quarantine for not only health reasons, but to protect them from more terrestrial invaders--Cold War, anyone?

And take, for instance, Valley of the Shadow, which, btw, is partly based, I think on a Twilight Zone ep of the same name. (It also involves a small town with a secret and a mind wipe that resolves the story.) Everyone goes along with NOT reporting what happened because an Air Force guy (an invader, natch) says so. Seriously? The story is a career-maker for a small-town reporter.

Moreover, the show was created partly because of the UFO 'flap' of 1966, infamous for the 'swamp gas' explanation proffered by Dr. J. Allen Hynek for the famed Michigan sightings in March 1966. Public distrust of the government and Air Force in regards to UFOs was at an all-time high in 1967. People were screaming 'coverup' in real life from the rooftops. The people of Palookaville, Wyoming would have told that invader to shove it and he would've had to vaporize them all on the spot. The writers clearly were unaware of this. What I'm saying, as a former newspaper writer myself (for almost 30 years), is that there is no way you could keep a lid on this, even in Flyover Country. But that's the way Hollywood writers thought.

Also, and I don't think these are nitpicks, were there no Quincys (or again, journalists) in any of these towns the Invaders took over, or anywhere nearby? Nobody thought it odd that in a town of say, 10,000 people that folks were dropping dead of brain hemorrhages left and right.

SAM: Looks like we got another one, Quince.

QUINCY: Order up a toxscreen, Sam. What did the hospital say?

SAM: They said it appeared he died of a cerebral hemorrhage.

QUINCY (clearly outraged): Sam, you mean to tell me ANOTHER cerebral hemorrhage? That's 29 in the last three and and a half weeks.

SAM: Aw, leave it alone, Quince. I do all the dirty work while you go off gallivanting with your non-age-appropriate girlfriends in your slick coroner station wagon. The bodies have been piling up for weeks.

QUINCY (even more clearly outraged): I'll tell you why the bodies are piling up, Sam. 29 cerebral hemorrhages in less than four weeks, that is NO accident, my friend. It looks to me like (DRAMATIC PAUSE HERE) MURRRRRRRRRRDERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR.
***
C'mon, a David Vincent/Quincy teamup. Who says no? 'The aliens are taking over the earth! THIS IS AN OUTRAGE!!! I'll bet they're all at that punk rock concert.'
 

johnnybear

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I know what you mean but without David Vincent we would have factories run by George Vikor producing alien regeneration tubes, machines controlling insects to eat human flesh en masse, the earth's axial orbit would have been disturbed and killed billions allowing the aliens to land here and either rule or destroy any survivors before they change the atmosphere of our planet, he also prevented them from using storms to destroy coastal regions and he also stopped a cold freezing plague from getting out of hand! His victories over the aliens were great but not significant enough to drive them off of the earth and the casualties were high for those that helped him too yes but what other conflict has never harmed the innocent?
JB
 

bmasters9

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But, and this certainly is personal bias, I simply don't find it all that much fun to watch. I'm not into bleak, depressing shows with a lot of violence and a high body count.

Me either! OT-- I'm seeing the Lynda Carter Wonder Woman on DVD now (starting w/the third and final go [1978-79] and working back), and I think Lynda Carter comes across more likable as Diana Prince/Wonder Woman (her signature role) than Roy Thinnes ever was in The Invaders.
 

ScottRE

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I feel the same way about The Invaders as I do about the sport of soccer. I admire it from a technical perspective. But I don't find it particularly enjoyable to watch. It's well-produced, well-directed and well-acted, with a lot of night-for-night shooting and obvious high-quality production values.

But, and this certainly is personal bias, I simply don't find it all that much fun to watch. I'm not into bleak, depressing shows with a lot of violence and a high body count. And let's face it, David Vincent is partially responsible for that high human body count, and that makes him unlikeable in my opinion. Take the episode Labyrinth for example. In the teaser, he comes across an injured man whom he suspects is an alien, and foists him on an unsuspecting doctor, whom the alien soon murders. If not for David Vincent, that doctor would be alive.
I like the series but David Vincent is too remote and cold for me to identify with. I don't know if it's the writing or Roy Thinnes himself, but he's actually kinda dull. He also can't be allowed to really progress of win in any substantial fashion. Honestly, he actually does come off as a crackpot and there's zero excitement in his being announced as an architect every week. I thought he was great in the pilot and a few early episodes. But by the end, I feel like he's just kind of there while the guest stars get all of the choice lines and situations. I feel like this concept would work better if the lead character was the alien commander and the humans were the revolving guests.

Unlike The Fugitive, where you can have dozens of episodes about side characters and not Kimble's search, The Invaders had to be about the alien invasion. Nobody was gonna tune into a sci-fi series to watch a story about a guy killing his wife so he could marry her sister or a shoplifter trying to save his family from the flu. So each week, David Vincent had to either lose or just win a little. And he wasn't a compelling enough character to follow week in and week out.
 

johnnybear

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That's funny I thought he was a heck of a guy to be honest! He lost his job (although we do see him architecting on at least one occasion) he lost his girlfriend (although like Richard Kimble he was a babe magnet) and he'd been put into a few hospitals for observation at least! Does it matter if he struggles with human relationships if he kills the bad guys?
JB
 

The 1960's

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Roypinky.jpg


Why waste a good image?
 

High C

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Great photo!

As for the non-likeability of Thinnes as David Vincent, here's what classic TV expert Stephen Bowie wrote about what the producers and viewers thought at the time:

***
Though they acknowledged the script problems, Martin and Alan Armer also suspected that there was an even more serious factor that was keeping audiences from sticking with The Invaders – the show’s leading man. “He tended to play the role as if the world were against him,” said Armer of Roy Thinnes. “Quinn and I discussed that at some length. With any series, the producer is looking for a kind of charm or magnetism that makes the audience get involved with [the star]. But rather than playing vulnerability, which is what David Janssen was playing in The Fugitive, he was playing almost a surly attitude that was off-putting, that I don’t think made people care about him.” Two years before, Quinn Martin had gotten rid of an actor for precisely the same reason, replacing the brooding Robert Lansing with the blandly likable Paul Burke as the star of Twelve O’Clock High. No doubt Martin considered a similar switch on The Invaders, but ultimately Thinnes kept his job.

“We had lunch a couple of times, discussing what a leading man has to have in a series – all of these things that are going to make the audience care about you and root for you and like you,” said Alan Armer. “You have to find something in [a series’ protagonist] that you can get involved with. And it was hard with Roy. I think that was one of the factors that worked against the show, although there were others.”

***
It's too bad, because in his interviews on the DVDs, Thinnes comes off as charming and a great raconteur.
 

MartinP.

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“He tended to play the role as if the world were against him,” said Armer of Roy Thinnes.

Well, ha, nearly everyone was, they thought he was crazy half the time. Besides, that, I never gave any of this a thought when I watched the show about him being likable or not. Aliens were invading the earth and he was the one trying to wake people up. What's not to like. !

Quinn Martin had gotten rid of an actor for precisely the same reason, replacing the brooding Robert Lansing with the blandly likable Paul Burke as the star of Twelve O’Clock High.

I happen to have watched the first episode of the 2nd season of 12 O'Clock High last night, where Paul Burke replaced Lansing. From what I've gleaned over the years online from fans of that show, most of them prefer the 1st season with Lansing. Burke also happened to be in the very first episode of that series and a couple other Season 1 episodes. I'm just glad it ran as long as it did. (But not long enough to get treated better; released on home media and such.)

P.S.: FYI, Roy Thinnes was in two episodes of 12 O'Clock High himself, in Season 1 and Season 3.
 

Peter M Fitzgerald

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Say, did you know there was an (apparently) unofficial pop song that undoubtedly was produced to jump on the brief Invaders craze of 1967? I didn't, until I stumbled across this upload of a single, performed by Mike Adkins, on YouTube the other day, as I was checking for some of the more obscure Halloween-themed tunes floating around out there...



Simple, but pretty catchy, if perhaps derivative of Johnny Rivers' popular Secret Agent Man song.
 

JohnHopper

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Two years before, Quinn Martin had gotten rid of an actor for precisely the same reason, replacing the brooding Robert Lansing with the blandly likable Paul Burke as the star of Twelve O’Clock High. No doubt Martin considered a similar switch on The Invaders, but ultimately Thinnes kept his job.

From that quote, we could state that QM was wrong to fire Lansing which had the same profile as Roy Thinnes.
Frankly, I couldn’t envision The Invaders with a likeable actor a la David Janssen.
 

Purple Wig

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From that quote, we could state that QM was wrong to fire Lansing which had the same profile as Roy Thinnes.
Frankly, I couldn’t envision The Invaders with a likeable actor a la David Janssen.
Thinnes was perfect for it.

I could see Darren McGavin pulling it off. Maybe Jack Klugman. Definitely not a Mike Connors...possibly Jack Lord.
 

Jeff Flugel

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Thinnes was perfect for it.

I could see Darren McGavin pulling it off. Maybe Jack Klugman. Definitely not a Mike Connors...possibly Jack Lord.
Yes, good points, John and Alan. I think the show needed the actor playing David Vincent to have a certain aloofness...not cold, exactly, but distant enough to portray his growing distrust and suspicion of nearly anyone he comes into contact with. I think Roy Thinnes nails it.
 

GMBurns

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I also liked the way Roy Thinnes played the role of David Vincent. His paranoia and distance made me feel like the world was really under attack, which seemed to be the point of the series. I always felt like something big was at stake, and found it to be an edge-of-my-seat kind of drama, even though I watched it as an adult. I also loved the way David Janssen played his role in the Fugitive, but they were two completely different characters in different settings. Richard Kimble was a tortured soul, and the stories were mostly (excellent) character studies. I don't think the Invaders would have worked if David Vincent wasn't so mad at the bad guys.

And I preferred Robert Lansing as the general in 12 O'Clock High. That season seemed grittier and darker, more in keeping with a world at war. While I like the series with Paul Burke, those two seasons did not seem to have as much punch.
 

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